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Attacks on Health Care: Prevent • Protect • Provide

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Attacks on Health Care

Attacks on health care in emergency situations disrupt the delivery of essential health services, endanger care providers, deprive people of urgently needed medical attention, and undermine our long term health development goals.

WHO collaborates closely with others to better understand the problem, bring attention to the issue, and find solutions that can prevent attacks; protect health facilities, workers, transport and supplies; and ensure the continued provision of health care despite such attacks.

WHO releases new report on attacks on health

Currently there is no publicly available source of consolidated information on attacks on health care in emergencies. This report is a first attempt to consolidate and analyse the data that is available from open sources. While the data are not comprehensive, the findings shed light on the severity and frequency of the problem.

Over the two-year period from January 2014 to December 2015, there were 594 reported attacks on health care that resulted in 959 deaths and 1561 injuries in 19 countries with emergencies. More than half of the attacks were against health care facilities and another quarter of the attacks were against health care workers. Sixty-two per cent of the attacks were reported to have intentionally targeted health care.

Read the full report